holding

A bit washed out at Cobleland

Cobleland had a wee bit of the old rain this weekend to help keep things lush but it was so heavy not even the midges could come out!  We still managed to do some face painting in the morning and make a couple of wands and rafts, although we couldn't race the rafts as the river was a bit high.

Imogen's Oak and Eilidh's & Keira's Hazel wands. The small one was Will's!

Lewis is making this fine craft with Will so will keep adding things to it throughout the Summer.  Lewis's Sister Abbie made 'Pink Polkadot' with Mum but they will have to race it next week too. Will made the small one - he's got a thing about 'small' at the moment? 

Forest Hills Activities

Magick Wands

Great wands made in Merlin's cave/corridor at Forest Hills this bank holiday Monday.

From Left: Annabel's Hazel, Camille's Oak, Harry's Rowan, Joseph's Oak, Samuel's Oak (and mini wand!), Caiden's Rowan, Tierney's Silver Birch and Jacob's Hazel - big brother got a wand for his birthday too.  You guys went before I gave out your spell making scrolls, if you didn't get them at Reception visit www.nixinnature.co.uk for a copy. (Website launch later this week).

Bat Walk

The first bat walk of the season here went well too, loads of bats hunting above the pond.  We met a lovely family who we are later taking out for Bushcraft as it was rained off (although after we cancelled it, there was not a drop of rain - typical)! Dave made a great bat although he hugged his victims rather than eating them :-).


Magick Wands at Tigh Mor

Luckily we were making wands indoors today at Tigh Mor as it was hoofing down!  The new magic makers were keen to get going with the spells so these lovely magical tools should help them with their wishes.

From left: Thomas & Elsa chose Hawthorn, Sophie & Neil chose Hazel.

Alice chose Hawthorn too, which was quite ironic her Mum said as this wand can help teach the importance of patience!

Cobleland Activities

Well, it's tipping down right now but the sun did come out for a lot of the weekend, just to prove it here's another nice picture of the bluebells near the Douglas Fir trees.


The weekend started off with the Chocolate Quest, Jasmine and Darah (aka Chaos & Mayhem) are getting a dab hand at this.  This week's quest involved answering questions about bats.  If you get a question wrong after hunting for the chocolate ticket in Teapot Wood you have to do a forfeit - they are not all bad though!

Teapot Lodge is nearly finished, just the roof to thatch and a door.

Jasmine's forfeit was to hug a tree, not really a forfeit as it's always a good thing to do :-). This Willow tree will be more than happy to get a hug!

 


Bushcraft & Survival

Here's Will explaining the edibility test for plants to the group - just for survival situations and never for mushrooms! Also, as a young lad, I think James, stood on a young Rowan tree Will had to explain about the dangers of uprooting or cutting down this superstitious, magical tree.

 
 
 
We managed to avoid the rain on the Dusk Walk and saw lots of bats amongst the trees.  We had to go out quite late though, it wasn't even dark at 10:30 when we finished, so well done kids for staying awake!

Magick Wands

Lovely wands made in the tent this week, we need to work on a spell to keep the midges out of the tent though!
 
Wands from left: Abby's Hawthorn, Andi's Rowan, Isla's Hawthorn, Angus's Hazel and Leah's Hazel.

Cobleland Activities

Despite the rain, we still managed to have fun in nature - in fact it made the bluebells smell even more amazing!


Will keeping himself busy making 'Teapot Lodge' in Teapot wood - I can fit in it haha!



I wish I caught Will's face when he first pulled this out of the ground on the Bushcraft session! It's the biggest pignut we've ever found and tasted yummy :-).


Fraser's lovely Hazel wand, complete with gems and a spiralling snake.
 
 
We got some bats on the Dusk Walk, unfortunately the midges too but the bats love 'em. This means we will be starting the bat walks next week.



Bank Holiday Weekend at Cobleland

The weather wasn't too bad for a bank holiday thank goodness! Not as busy as Easter, but lots of fun and a couple of new sessions launched.

First up, Anna chose a bright pink cat for me to paint on her face, matching her top of course.

Three lovely wands, Cameron chose Silver Birch, Grace and Cara Hazel. Then the next day young Rhona was bored so she popped over to the tent to see if we could help.  She ended up making this lovely Hazel wand complete with gems and a gorgeous pendant.

Rhona's hazel wand - her birthday tree is Hazel and her sister is called Hazel too!


We launched the Chocolate Quest this week, attracting eleven hungry chocolate hunters. Sixteen tickets were hidden around the site, when one was found you had to come back to the Ranger's Tent to pick a task from the pot.  My favourites were; 'Do ten press ups' (impressed with Harris's one legged version!) and 'Hug a Tree'.  No-one found all the tickets by the end of the hour, but bonus prizes were given for a task completed successfully. Of course they had earnt their big choccy bars after all that exercise!
This game will change periodically with updated tasks all the time.  We should have made it a Star Wars themed game - May the 4th be with you and all, snort!!


Our first Dusk Walk of the year was fun having not done that version there for a few years.  Just a bit of rain, but lots of folklore to talk about with all the lovely plants coming up and we saw bats towards the end! Bat walks will be making a return soon now that they are starting to wake from their long winter sleep.

 
Primrose; said to be used to see into the faery realms, traditionally used on the graves of children in Victorian times :-(, and thirteen flowers were brought into the house at Easter to ensure a good clutch of eggs on the farm. 
 
OK, the Wacky Forth Races made a nail biting return this year- literally as Darah (the winner in pink) watches the close finish of the rafts nails in mouth!  We very nearly lost the rafts over the rope at the end as the river is still a bit high, but after getting a wet bum myself, we saved them all.  I need some waders this year! Apparently Orla's Mum has a picture of this ;-z.
 
 From bottom: Stringy thing by Lewis, Rhona snd Steele, Darah's winning raft Ninkinpoop (with the willow pentagram star), Jasmine's Rossetta, Emma's Flower, James and Evan's Diet Coke, Daniel's Dday Yday Raft, Kiana's Daisy Chain, Orla's Tansylee and Anny and Niamh's Vintage.

 Rafts pictured bottom to top
 

It's a close one - well done Darah!




Magick Wands & Spells

As promised, here is a copy of how to make spells for those that make magick wands with us. There are two versions depending on your age and experience :-). Feel free to ask any questions by leaving a comment or contacting us via our Facebook page or email nix@nixinnature.co.uk - Nikki Skittlethorpe.

For older and more experienced magick makers

For the younger ones







Happy Easter Cobleland Campsite

Wonderful weather here in the Trossachs!  Perfect for our Easter Activities which kicked off on Saturday with wand making - look at these magnificent magickal tools!  Mostly Hazel wands chose their new owners, followed by a few Silver Birch and one Holly for Mum Joyce :-).

16 wands sparkling with magick


 

 

Easter Sunday was of course the egg and spoon races, then the hunt itself - a bit more tricky this year in that the kids had to follow a number of clues around the site before cracking the code (not the egg) to find the password for the chocolate egg.




Go Mum's!
The Dad's race was a thundering one, the 'nearly' winner dropping his egg at the last minute and drop kicking it over the line - bad luck old chum!





First back cracking the code was Orla and Natasha in just 14 minutes! It didn't take long for the other 31 egg hunters to get back :-).

Next it was off to The Lodge in Aberfoyle for more wands and face painting!

Magick Wands at Tigh Mor

Fifteen lovely new magick makers joined us today at Tigh Mor for magick wands. :-)

Mostly wands from either hazel or ash chose their new owners, with a couple of oaks and one silver birch finding new homes too.  This must mean lots of creativity, wisdom, strength and one new beginning then! 

Here's a selection of most of them (the youngest new magick makers couldn't wait any longer to be let loose with their new magick making tool).  I wore my new witches cape, but with all that magickal energy in the room it was too hot and I had to take it off!


Christmas Weekend at The Lodge

A fittingly snowy last weekend at The Lodge in Aberfoyle this weekend. Intrepid Scotland were there too this week making some lovely Christmas Wreaths, along with young Kitty and Felix who kept us busy making wands. Also, David the amazing wood carver who kindly let Will have a go and Angela from AB Crafts - sooo clever with her adorable homemade crafts. All was very festive, especially as David Wilkie was keeping us entertained with his Kazoo!

Snow is falling, all around The Lodge!

Magickal Stall
 
 
 Will is let loose with the wood carving tools!
 
Wands waiting for witches and wizards
 
 
One of David's lovely wooden carvings - a quill made from wood, so gorgeous I had to get one!
 
 From left; Ailsa' ash, Iona's ash, Struan's willow and William's ash wands - most wanted power animals inscribed into the wands for extra magickal energy :-)
 
Another collection of lovely wands, mainly Kitty and Felix's wands - they will be busy magick making over the Christmas period then!
 
One prepared earlier by Will ready to sell, which it did :-)
 
Some fun cheeky face painting at the lodge, my first three adults (other than family) so nice to see everyone was feeling festively cheeky!
 



David Robertson managed to keep his snowman on all day whilst selling Christmas trees in the sleet outside, is it me or are there a lot of David's at The Lodge?
 
Merry Christmas everyone and best wishes to all for the New Year - a huge thank you to everyone that has joined in and supported Nix in Nature this year :-)